My Father Was a Syrian Refugee: Pesach & Freedom in 2016

NOTE: This essay was cross posted at Kol Ami. In the Passover seder, we are commanded to tell our story of freedom beginning with the words: “Arami Oveid Avi – My father was a wandering/escaped Aramean.” There are differences of opinion regarding whether this line refers to Abraham or to Jacob. But either way, itsContinue reading “My Father Was a Syrian Refugee: Pesach & Freedom in 2016”

An Egalitarian Kotel

In the movie The Ten Commandments, Moses comes down the mountain with two tablets, containing the 10 laws that the Israelites are to follow. I love that movie. But it doesn’t tell the whole story. Jewish tradition tells says what happened at Sinai was far bigger than any 10 Commandments. It was even bigger thenContinue reading “An Egalitarian Kotel”

Elu V’Elu: Sometimes there’s more than one right answer

NOTE: This entry was cross-posted at Jewish Values Online. People often ask me questions like: What does Reform Judaism say about the afterlife? Do Reform Jews have to keep kosher? Are Reform Jews allowed to drive on Shabbat? In many cases, the answer to these questions is: “It depends.” Among the central values of ReformContinue reading “Elu V’Elu: Sometimes there’s more than one right answer”

Books, Bullies, Beit Shemesh: A Sermon for Parashat Bo

My two older sons recently did something very strange and surprising: they started reading a lot! The reason is that they found a book – or actually a series of books – that they really like. It’s called Diary of a Wimpy Kid. It’s a fictional, first-person account of something most of us would ratherContinue reading “Books, Bullies, Beit Shemesh: A Sermon for Parashat Bo”

%d bloggers like this: